Archives: Recent Cases

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Federal Appeals Court Decision Regarding NLRB Workplace Investigation Confidentiality Policies Fails To Answer Critical Question For Employers

In 2015, we reported to you about the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) decision in the Banner Estrella Medical Center case, which placed significant limits on employers’ ability to request employee confidentiality during workplace investigations. As a reminder, in the Banner case, the NLRB found that Banner Estrella maintained a policy of instructing employees involved in … Continue Reading

Dismissing for long-term sickness – when is enough enough?

Legally-speaking O’Brien – v – Bolton St Catherine’s Academy as reported last week is mostly about how much overlap there is between fairness for unfair dismissal purposes and justification in disability discrimination terms (in brief, very substantial).  It is also a fine illustration of how hard it is to overturn an Employment Tribunal judgement on … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Reins in Administrative Overreaching of NLRB

On March 21, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that one-time acting National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) General Counsel Lafe Solomon improperly served as the agency’s Acting General Counsel while he awaited U.S. Senate confirmation to a permanent appointment, upholding a U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit ruling that most of his three-year tenure … Continue Reading

Travel Ban Executive Order Update: The Constitutional Tug-of-War Continues

Last week we saw another round in the battle between the Executive and Judiciary branches over the President’s travel ban impacting nationals Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, and Yemen. Federal District Courts in Hawaii (State of Hawaii v. Trump) and Maryland (International Refugee Assistance Project (“IRAP”) v. Trump) stayed the implementation of the revised Travel/Refugee … Continue Reading

Ninth Circuit Expands Reach of Dodd-Frank Anti-Retaliation Protections

Adding to an existing split among the federal appeals courts, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled on March 8, 2017 that employees who make internal reports about suspected violations of the federal securities laws and other anti-fraud statutes are covered by the “whistleblower” protections of the Dodd-Frank Act (Dodd-Frank), even if … Continue Reading

Federal District Court Order Suggests It May Put Out To Pasture California’s Law Preventing Internet Publication of Hollywood Actors’ Ages

In a recent decision, United States District Court Judge Vince Chhabria issued a preliminary injunction, temporarily suspending AB 1687, a California law requiring certain online entertainment websites to remove ages of Hollywood actors, upon request by those individuals. The law’s stated purpose is to prevent age discrimination in the entertainment industry. IMDb.com, Inc., owned by … Continue Reading

Saliva tests, breathalysers, protection of whistleblowers: time for employers in France to update their internal rules

Several recent developments require companies with at least 20 employees in France to update their current internal rules: the new discriminatory criterion (i.e. the ability to speak another language) recently added by law to the list of prohibited ones, the so-called “Sapin Law II” which introduced legal protection for whistle-blowers and the obligation for employers … Continue Reading

The DOL Fiduciary Rule: Are Commission Structures for Retirement Investment Advisers a Thing of the Past?

On Wednesday, February 9, a Texas federal judge upheld the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) controversial fiduciary rule for retirement investment advisers — just hours after the agency had asked to stay the case in light of President Donald Trump’s directive to it on February 3rd to conduct an “economic and legal analysis” of the … Continue Reading

Updates on Impact of Travel Ban Executive Order: One Week and Counting

Significant confusion has arisen in the week since President Trump issued his Executive Order (EO) entitled Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry Into the United States on January 27, 2017. Our previous summary can be found here. Following a frenetic week at U.S. ports of entry and international airports and increased litigation in several … Continue Reading

Why Can’t I Terminate My Employee for An Unexcused Absence!?

The California Court of Appeals’ recent decision in Bareno v. San Diego Community College is a good reminder for employers about the pitfalls of terminating an employee based on a “technical” policy violation and how easy it is for an employee to put an employer on notice that the employee is taking a protected California Family … Continue Reading

UPDATED – Additional Executive Order Issued with Immediate Impact on Travel to the United States

On Friday January 27, 2017, the president issued an Executive Order (EO) entitled, Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry Into the United States. The EO has yet to be posted on the White House website but the text can be found here. The purpose of this Executive Order, as stated, is to “protect our … Continue Reading

US Supreme Court to Resolve Dispute Over Enforceability of Class Waivers in Arbitration Agreements

  As followers of our blog know, we have been closely watching developments over the past few years involving the tension between the National Labor Relations Board and the courts concerning whether arbitration agreements that require employees to resolve most employment-related disputes in individual arbitration proceedings, and bar the use of class or collective action … Continue Reading

EAT says even expired warnings can be taken into account when dismissing an employee. Sometimes.

In Stratford v Auto Trail VR Ltd the EAT held that an expired warning can be taken into account when considering whether a dismissal was fair or unfair under s98(4) Employment Rights Act 1996. Mr Stratford had the sort of disciplinary record which requires real commitment (17 incidents in less than 13 years). The most … Continue Reading

EAT stresses line between disability and unhappiness in the workplace

Fans of the unnecessary medicalisation of management issues in the workplace will be sadly disappointed by a new Employment Appeal Tribunal decision at the end of December. For everyone else, Herry – v – Dudley MBC represents a very sensible and timely reminder of where the line lies between being disabled on the one hand … Continue Reading

He’s making a list, he’s checking it twice… the year’s best misconduct cases

As the Festive Season reaches its peak Down Under, we have taken a look back at the more ‘interesting’ cases of 2016 to help Santa prepare his Naughty or Nice List for Australian employers: First to be considered for Santa’s list is a labourer who, in the midst of a heated discussion, somewhat unchantably called … Continue Reading

Unwinding settlement agreements through lack of mental capacity

When you sign up a Settlement Agreement with an ex-employee you think that’s the end of the matter, right? Clearly that is the general intention, but we already know that even the most procedurally prim and proper settlement agreement can be undone by evidence that it was entered into by fraud or misrepresentation and now … Continue Reading

OSHA Reporting Rule Now In Effect – Injunction Request Denied

Texas is currently a hot spot for legal challenges to U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) administrative rules.  Just this past week, a judge in the Eastern District of Texas granted a preliminary injunction and ruled that the DOL’s Overtime Rule was to be put on hold because the state and business plaintiffs were able to … Continue Reading

Freedom of expression of employees or abuse, all depends on the context in France

In a recent case Cass. Soc. Sté Cegedim v. S, the French Labour Supreme Court upheld the decision of the Court of Appeal that an employee’s dismissal was void, on the ground that his freedom of expression had been violated. The employee had criticised the company’s management in an email sent to all his colleagues … Continue Reading

New Overtime Regulations Put On Hold – U.S. Federal Court Judge Enjoins Implementation of FLSA Regulations

As we reported previously, in September 2016, 21 U.S. states filed a lawsuit to enjoin the implementation of the long-anticipated Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) regulations, which were scheduled to go into effect on December 1, 2016. The states argued that the Department of Labor’s regulations (the “Final Rule”) would force states and businesses to … Continue Reading
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